Project Members


IMG_0586Dr. Meaghan Peuramaki-Brown & Dr. Shawn G. Morton (Principal & Associate Investigators)

Meaghan (Principal Investigator) is an Associate Professor in the Anthropology Program at Athabasca University (AU) in Canada. She is also an Adjunct Associate Professor in the Department of Anthropology & Archaeology at the University of Calgary and a Visiting Researcher at Northwestern Polytechnic. She received her Ph.D. in Archaeology from the University of Calgary in 2013 and has been doing archaeology in Belize since 1999. Meaghan’s research focuses on the built environment and production studies of material culture in Mesoamerica. She investigates how individuals, households, and communities negotiated their positions in locally and regionally defined socio-political and economic institutions. She also studies the impact of such negotiations on the overall processes of ancient settlement and urban/urban-like development. Visit Meaghan’s AU profile to learn more.

Shawn (Associate Investigator) is an Instructor at Northwestern Polytechnic (NWP) in Canada. He completed his Ph.D. in the Department of Anthropology & Archaeology at the University of Calgary (2015), where he is now an Adjunct Researcher. His research interests focus on the roles of architecture/built space, ritual, and religion in the constitution of group identity at local and polity levels (particularly in Mesoamerica and the Caribbean). Visit Shawn’s NWP profile to learn more.

IMG_5454 copy 2Dr. Jill Jordan (Associate Investigator and Lab Director)

Jill completed her Ph.D. in Archaeology from the University of New Mexico (2019). Her dissertation addressed learning networks and communities of practice among Late Classic, non-elite Maya potters at Baking Pot and Uxbenká, Belize. Her research interests include ceramic typological analysis, ceramic technology, domestic craft production, regional interaction networks and economic systems, intracommunity household organization, thin section petrography, Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), Electron Probe Microanalysis (EPMA), sedimentary geology, and ancient Maya acquisition, manipulation, and use of clay and rock resources for ceramic production. In addition to her position with SCRAP, she continues to conduct research on ceramic technology with the Belize Valley Archaeological Reconnaissance (BVAR) project.

SCRAP_2013_153-Belize 2013 485 copy

Mr. Higinio Chiac Sr. (Community Liaison/Foreman)

Mr. Chiac, a resident of Maya Mopan Village, has worked with the SCRAP project from the beginning, serving as our community liaison. He now works with us as our foreman in the field.


Mr. Matt Longstaffe (Field Director & Senior Field Supervisor)

36230917_10104041979992071_3791668863452577792_nMatt is a PhD candidate at the University of Calgary. He received his BA Honours Specialization in Anthropology from the University of Western Ontario (2008), and an MA in Anthropology from Trent University (2011). Matt’s research focuses on the impact of economic activities on the development of communities. His research interests include settlement pattern studies, household archaeology, ancient land use, production and exchange systems, and human-environment interactions. His research with SCRAP is partially supported by a SSHRC PhD Fellowship.

Mr. Dave Blaine (Senior Field Supervisor, Social Media & GIS Specialist, Photographer)

Windy_BW_WebDave is an MA student at Athabasca University. He is also a photographer, videographer, and cartographic specialist. After completing his BA in Archaeology at the University of Calgary (2002), Dave continued his education at the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology, earning a certificate in Photography (2006) and a Bachelor of Applied Technology in Geographic Information Systems (2016). Dave specializes in visual storytelling; using photographs, videos, and maps.  He has produced award-winning map products and served a variety of clients in the travel and real-estate industries, as well as in the fields of wildlife conservation, heritage, and archaeology.  Throughout his entrepreneurial career, he has combined his passions for communication, graphic design, research, and analytics in order to visualize complex subjects in accessible and informative ways. His research with SCRAP is partially supported by a SSHRC MA Scholarship.

Ms. Saralyn Smith (Junior Field Supervisor)IMG_0073

Saralyn is an MSc Geology student at Western University. She received her BSc Honours Double Major in Geology and Biological Anthropology & Archaeology from Western University (2022), analyzing ancient charcoal from Puebloan fires at an archaeological site in Arizona. Saralyn’s current research with SCRAP involves soil sampling for geochemical testing to better understand the agricultural patterns at Alabama.

Mr. Alson Ovando (Junior Field Supervisor) Alson_Bio

Alson holds a Bachelor’s degree in Natural Resource Management from the University of Belize. In 2021, he completed an internship with the Belize Institute of Archaeology (IA), stationed at the Serpon Sugar Mill Archaeological Reserve. At Serpon, he was responsible for collecting geospatial data and creating maps for the IA. Alson volunteered with SCRAP in 2018 at the Alabama archaeological site, and he enjoys participating in SCRAP’s bi-weekly reading group.

Local Participation: In addition to the above-mentioned individuals, each year we have numerous local field assistants, volunteers, and students as part of our amazing team. Research and outreach activities are conducted in consultation with the associated Village Alcalde, Chairperson, Village Council, and other local organizations and institutions. Additionally, numerous local Belizean business proprietors in the Stann Creek District and Cayo District provide our team with accommodation, food, vehicles, etc.


  • Ms. Sylvia Batty (Fajina Outreach, Heritage Education Network Belize)
  • Mr. Joshua Arana, Stann Creek House of Culture (Culture)
  • Mr. Giovanni Castillo, Northern Arizona University (AR/VR Technology)
  • Dr. Linda Howie, HD Analytical Solutions/Western University (Material Sciences)
  • Dr. Elizabeth Paris, University of Calgary (pXRF)
  • Dr. Joanna Potter, HD Analytical Solutions (Geology)
  • Ms. Aurora Saqui, Nuuk Cheil Cottages (Experimental Pottery Manufacture)
  • Dr. Elizabeth Webb, Western University (Biochemistry)



D. Blaine and M. Peuramaki-Brown (Athabasca University); F. Tzib (Eden SDA High School); S. Morton (Northern Arizona University/Grande Prairie Regional College); I. Cal, H., Chiac Jr., H. Chiac Sr., J. Chiac, S. Chiac, V. Chiac, D. Paquiul, J. Paquiul, L. Salam, D. Sho, A. Tush (Maya Mopan); M. Longstaffe, E. N. Phillips, G. Taylor (University of Calgary); J. Jordan (University of New Mexico/Boundary End Center); I. Meulenberg and S. Fokké (Archeologische Dienst Suriname); Paul Smith (Institute of Archaeology Belize).


Dr. Meaghan Peuramaki-Brown (Athabasca University); Dr. Shawn Morton (Northern Arizona University); Dr. Kathryn Reese-Taylor (University of Calgary); Dr. Linda Howie (HD Analytical Solutions/Western University); Dr. Joanna Potter (HD Analytical Solutions); Jillian Jordan (University of New Mexico); H. Chiac Sr., J. Paquiul, J. Chiac, I. Cal, L. Salam, H. Chiac Jr., S. Chiac, N. Teul, and T. Teul (Maya Mopan); Frank Tzib (Eden SDA High School); David Blaine (Creating Context, Inc.); A. Megan Williams (Athabasca University); D. Leslie and A. Ovando (University of Belize); J. Delos Reyes, J. Dowler, M. George, S. Hiwatashi-Kreusch, K. Hubenig, M. Longstaffe, A. Melena, N. Phillips, D. Smith, and G. Taylor (University of Calgary).


We took a break to catch up, regroup, and refocus our investigations.


Dr. Meaghan Peuramaki-Brown (Athabasca University); Dr. Shawn Morton (University of Calgary); I. Cal, H. Chiac Jr., J. Chiac, G. Choc, J. Paquiul, Z. Tush, and S. Chiac (Maya Mopan); Virginia Chiac (Independence Junior College); Teaghan Koster (Lakehead University), Cristina Oliveira (University of Florida), Kelsey Pennanen (Lakehead University), Megan Williams (Athabasca University)


Dr. Meaghan Peuramaki-Brown (Athabasca University); Dr. Shawn Morton (University of Calgary); I. Cal, J. Cal, G. Choc, and J. Paquiul (Maya Mopan); Lisa Green (Galen University); Jesucita Guerra (University of Belize); Brittany Johnson (University of Calgary); Tawny Tibbits (University of Iowa)


Dr. Sonja Schwake (Franklin & Marshall); Dr. Meaghan Peuramaki-Brown (McMaster University); G. Choc, J. Paquiul, and L. Salam (Maya Mopan);  Julila Paul (McMaster University); Steven Moodie (Trent University).


  • Dr. Tristan Carter, McMaster University (EDXRF)
  • Mr. Colin Elliot, Athabasca University (visualization technology)
  • Dr. Kelly Monteleone, Mount Royal University & University of Calgary (GIS)
  • Ms. Lorraine Stratkotter, University of Calgary (AU Virtual Archaeology Lab)
  • Dr. Tawny Tibbits, University of Iowa (pXRF)